Course Syllabus

International Financial Management

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Semester & Location:

Fall 2020- DIS Copenhagen

Type & Credits:

Core Course- 3 credits

Core Course Study Tours: Northern Germany and Edinburgh, Scotland


Major Disciplines:

Business, Economics, Finance

Faculty Members:

Neil Smith

Program Director:

Susanne Goul Hovmand,

Time & Place:


Description of Course

In this course you gain a practical understanding on how international businesses are run and the issues affecting these. We discuss these issues in relation to traditional management of international businesses and also how these management issues may be impacted in relation to dealing with current events in the world at large.

Traditional issues include why companies hedge and how this could work (in both principle and practice), issues they face when expanding into new markets, risk management in general, and issues surrounding debt and equity financing.

In terms of more topical issues, these include the concept of free trade, the Euro and currency markets in general. We discuss these in the context of the issues they present to international businesses and how any problems can be pro-actively managed.

The course is interactive at all stages, including in general classes and assignments. Assignments include case studies based on real-life international transactions. The course includes trips to Hamburg in Northern Germany and Edinburgh in Scotland. These trips, and the visits in them are an integral part of the course, and tie in with teaching in class.

Learning Objectives

Over and above the specific issues raised in the course introduction, this course will develop students in the following ways:

  • To gain a practical understanding of foreign exchange markets and international capital markets and how these are used in practice by international businesses.
  • To gain an understanding of the concepts of risk/cash management and how these are dealt with in practical issues;
  • To explore why companies might want to raise money by debt or equity and the issues this creates for international businesses;
  • To understand European financial markets, particularly issues surrounding the European Central Bank;
  • To understand why traditional issues in international business (like free trade) have come under pressure in recent years and how international companies can manage this;
  • To develop practical problem solving skills and critical thought which can be applied to real life examples of cross-border issues;



Neil Smith- LLB (Honours), University of Glasgow, 1999; Diploma in Legal Practice, Glasgow Graduate School of Law, 2000. Has co-owned business for the last decade advising small and medium sized companies on structuring, international expansion and M & A. With DIS since Spring 2016.


The anchor textbooks will be Madura & Fox, 2014 “International Financial Management” 3rd edition. Other reading will come from academic periodicals, but emphasis will also be placed on live events, with recent articles and videos from the likes of the Financial Times, the Economist, Bloomberg and CNBC.

Field Studies

Potential Field Studies include the Business Ministry. 

Guest Lecturers


Study Tours

In Germany

Berenberg Bank –  merchant bank, providing insight into the financial sector in Germany.

Airbus – including factory visit, for an example of how a company with markets all over the world deals with practical financial issues.

Beiersdorf Global – leading cosmetics group on dealing with different brands and how to manage the process.

In Scotland

RBS (Royal Bank of Scotland), providing input on structural matters of being an international bank, and in particular the international restructuring which has taken place in the wake of the financial crisis.

Skyscanner (internet search engine), providing input as to the start-up industry in the UK.

Standard Life Aberdeen (fund manager), providing input on markets in the UK and topical issues relating to them.

Scottish Enterprise – public body, providing input on Foreign Direct Investment.

Edrington Group – a leading spirits (whisky) group based in Glasgow

Other boutique visits to be arranged in Scotland

Aims of Core Course Weeks Generally

  • To gain a practical understand of financial markets in Europe (specifically Germany and the UK) and how this may differ to the US;
  • To gain a practical understanding of how different business deal with issues of international management (including cash and risk management) and tie in with the issues discussed in class;
  • To see in practice how business strategy may have to react to events in markets;
  • To understand different business cultures and the impact they may have on strategies;
  • To explore the history and the culture of two beautiful cities;
  • To get to know classmates in a different, less formal environment




Assignment 1 (Case Study on an International Business looking to expand, in groups)



Assignment 2 (Case Study on Debt- Corporate Bonds, in groups)



Assignment 3 (Written Presentation on a group expansion, with particular emphasis on issues relating to the study tours, individual)




Final Exam


Class Activity


Academic Regulations  

Please make sure to read the Academic Regulations on the DIS website. There you will find regulations on:

DIS - Study Abroad in Scandinavia -

Course Summary:

Date Details